Under Fire Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Cocon calculate about the squad?

2. When the men are on leave, it is evident that Blaire changed in what way?

3. What is unique about the 5th battalion?

4. What biblical location does the narrator allude to as he carries Joseph to safety?

5. What do the men think of all of the things that the army issues them?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

This novel is alleged to be semi auto-biographical, and there are strong hints that the narrator of the story is the author. Still, little is revealed about the narrator, although it is clear that he is not like the other men of the squad.

Part 1) Describe as many details about the narrator as possible. What are his personality traits? What is his background and history?

Part 2) Explain what sets the narrator apart from the other men of the squad. How is he different in speech, action, and thought? What does this say about his character?

Part 3) What evidence exists to suggest that the author and narrator are the same person? Is there any evidence to the contrary? What is the author's intent in this regard?

Part 4) Describe the literary intent of suggesting, but never confirming, that the narrator is the author.

Essay Topic 2

The machine gun is a feared weapon on the battlefield, and rightly so. Its effectiveness is seen in detail in the chapter "Under Fire," and the men discuss it on many occasions. It is the primary reason for the existence of trench warfare, and the cause of most of the misery on which the book centers. The machine gunners themselves represent an almost élite class in the army, being specially favored targets for retribution and looting, and receiving a variety of favors from their own side.

Part 1) Use information from the book to explain what a machine gun is and its impact on warfare in the time of the novel.

Part 2) Explain the men's perceptions and fears about machine guns. Cite specific examples to justify or disprove these perceptions.

Part 3) Discuss some of the ways that machine gunners are treated differently from other soldiers, both by their own forces and by the enemy. Why do these men receive this treatment?

Essay Topic 3

Many types of forces and divisions within the French army are discussed in the book. The poilus are the mainstay of the French forces, but there are many others, including the Territorials, the Zouaves, and the Foreign Legion.

Part 1) Describe in detail at least three forces in the French army besides the poilus. Using information from the book, discuss their composition, their armaments, and their strengths and weaknesses.

Part 2) Using examples from the book, explain how each of these groups performs a vital function in the French army that helps to support the poilus.

Part 3) Explain how the poilus relate to each of these others forces. How often do they work in close connection? What is the poilus' opinion of each group?

(see the answer keys)

This section contains 3,023 words
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